Sometimes, it is a burden in this world to see and speak the truth when others are blind to it. So I can’t quiet believe that all my usual online haunts have decided that this episode of Glee, devoted to religion and belief, was good. Even nuanced. *CAAAAAAAACKKKKK* Excuse me. I believe I have a communion wafer lodged in my heathen throat.
We know you don’t make no junk, but you kind of made some junk.
The Mean Girls.
Pray with us after the jump, won’t you?
So. Where to begin. Finn hungry. Finn make Sandwich. Finn surprised when sandwich look like Jesus. But Finn still hungry, so Finn cut part of sandwich off and eat it. Finn pray to other part of sandwich. Finn want to win football game. Amen.
He promises “grilled cheesus” that if the team wins, he’ll devote an entire week of glee to songs of praise and worship. Or something.
Artie: Is this thing where I play football in a wheelchair still a thing? It is? Good.
They DO win. Praise the lord and pass the Miracle Whip!
Over at Hummel Tire and Lube, Kurt drops off his dad’s lunch. It’s healthy because foreshadowing. Burt eats like he’s still a teenager and normally downs two Slim Jims and a Coke for breakfast. Around here we call that the Tuesday special. He and Kurt argue about Friday night dinners, which Burt believes are sacred. SACRED. Kurt is not so inclined. He’s got plans and they involve Von Trapps. Burt makes this face:
This is his “I am disappointed in you, son.” face.
So, in keeping with his promise to the cheesy saviour, Finn tells everybody in glee he has an announcement to make. “Oh my God,” says Puck. “He’s coming out.” Finn jokes that he DOES have a new man in his life: Jesus Christ.
Puck: Double WUT?
He thinks this is silly. Life is about, um, living while you can. And stuff. Puck would prefer to voice his thoughts in song form. What follows is an unnecessarily autotuned dance party to Billy Joel’s Only The Good Die Young.
Kurt, being unimpressed with the Piano Man, texts throughout Puck’s performance.
HOW RUDE. Seriously. You know he’d pitch a hissy of epic proportions if somebody did that to him. Maybe he was texting his dad something like “OMG. Billy Joel is so over.” Maybe that is why Burt suddenly falls to the ground all “Ow.”
Maybe, but I doubt it. After Emma and Schue break the news to Kurt, they take him to the hospital. I can see why Emma is with him, but seriously? Schue? Who will teach the children Espanol?
They follow him into the hospital room and Kurt’s like “WTF? GTFO!” And they’re all “You shouldn’t be alone.” Yes. You should definitely be with your wacked out guidance counsellor and your becurled glee club advisor instead.
Also, the less said about how incredibly old and haggard they both look here, the better.
Finn is not sure how this whole prayer thing works. I AM sure of how this whole teenage boy posters thing works and somebody Finn’s age and maturity level and general dim-bulbedness would not, repeat NOT, be displaying a Dashboard Confessional poster. This is kind of like when Buffy would have posters of the String Cheese Incident on her bedroom walls. Nice try, set decorator, but you are crazy for this one.
Finn asks his sandwich if it wouldn’t be too much trouble to help him touch some boobies. I’m sure he’s not busy.
Next day: FINN MAD. Finn ANGRY! How could Kurt not tell Finn that Finn’s not-quite dad had a heart attack. Two seconds of hurt feelings later, it’s settled and Mercedes sings I Turn To You.
Kurt is all: AUGH! Those are some extreme closeups. He tells glee that he doesn’t believe in God. Mercedes says he can’t know there isn’t one. Kurt lapses into a diatribe about how we can’t know anything, really, or something. Schue wonders:
Did I leave the cap off the Brylcreem?
But seriously. Kurt is basically like “I am an atheist because god disappointed me by making his followers hate me for who I am.” Because that is how faith works. DUH.
Meantime, Sue has heard about Schue’s prayer circle. She is not impressed. Public school. Religion should be separate. This isn’t a monarchy. Believe her, she’s tried. Etc. Figgins wonders why he’s even here.
Cheesus Sandwich grants Finn his second wish, which was to touch Rachel’s boobs even though they probably aren’t that great. (WHAT?) Rachel rewards him for agreeing to send any potential children they might have to “Jew school” where they can eat lox and wear yarmulkes. What a prince. The reward? Boobs.
This entire plot is ridiculous. I mean, the plot about Rachel suddenly being a prude who doesn’t plan on having sex until she’s 25. Remember last season when she fucking owned her sexual identity and blew apart the Chastity Club’s logic for being cock teases and then made out with Puck because it was totally hot? It was sort of novel to have a teenage girl admit to having sexual needs and desires of her own. Usually, they exist to fulfill their boyfriend’s sex desires. I guess owning your sexuality is boring when you can be making out awkwardly with a clumsy oaf who has no idea how to please you.
Sue gathers Brittany and “Juggs the clown” to get a little dirt on whatever Schue is up to now. Because this is stupid. Brittany made Kurt a card that says Heart Attacks Are From Caring Too Much. DAW. Santana says everybody prayin’ now. Except Kurt. Sue takes this information and gets Kurt to lodge a formal complaint about this because that’s how deeply she cares. Or something. So now glee club can’t sing god songs. Good. Sue’s right, this is a public school and Mercedes seems to have ample opportunity to sing about her god in her church. Also, it is totally not cool to push your religious beliefs on somebody who has expressed numerous times the ways in which he does not want to talk about the lord.
But Kurt is also being a douchebag. In fact, EVERYBODY is a huge douchebag this episode. Kurt, come on. Do you really care if these wizards prance around praying to a sandwich or a god or whatever? C’mon, man. Your dad’s sick! Focus!
Speaking of douchebags: Emma barges into Sue’s office and demands to know what childhood trauma caused her to be such a douchebag. Sue tells her she used to idolize her big sister, but then she realized not everybody felt that way about her sister. In fact, people teased her. A lot. So Sue prayed to god for her sister to get better. And she didn’t. ERGO. There is no god. Good logic, Sue. Solid reasons for becoming the proud atheist you are today, I’m sure.
I guess I should be happy that this show didn’t end up “reforming” the atheists, but really. Their reasons for being atheists are kind of… not what I think atheists really are all about. It just seems like this is a really lazy way of presenting a very complex ideology that can take the person in question a lot of discussion and thought before they arrive at the conclusion that there is no god. And the idea that atheists believe in nothing is silly. We believe in science and love and, y’know, family. There are a whole host of beliefs out there and the relatively narrow ones presented on this show this week were just hideous. Hell, this week’s episode of Community did a better job of juxtaposing the belief in an afterlife with the miracle of birth and half of that plot was completely in the background!
Some people might feel like it’s a lonely life to not believe in some overarching spiritual force greater than ourselves, but I have lots of friends and a pretty great family and I don’t feel like my life is less worth living because I don’t believe in heaven or hell. Quite the contrary. I believe we only get this scant amount of time, so we should use it wisely and well and love with all our hearts. Pack as much in as you can, as it were. But that’s just silly, I suppose. Moving on.
Puck interrupts Finn praying to his sandwich before the big game. And no, that is not a euphemism.
Puck reveals that he’s really bummed about Kurt’s dad and that he’s been going to temple to pray for him. He asks what Finn’s been praying for. “Same stuff.” False. That is a lie. Finn was actually praying for his sandwich to make him the lead quarterback again because popularity. WHAT A GUY. Anyway, I am shocked that Puck, my main heeb, is a better person than Finn. SHOCKED.
This next song begins outside because “That’s how Yentl did it.” Oh man. Oh Jeez. Finn, can you pray to your sandwich to make this end?
Well, it’s only a sandwich after all. It doesn’t have the power to stop Rachel from screaming along to Papa Can You Hear Me?
Rachel: You aren’t my father, but: PAPA CAN YOU HEAR ME? No? Let me touch your head.
Can you hear me now?
I hope so, because Quinn, Mercedes and Rachel are taking turns praying over Burt while Carol and Finn look on. Kurt is outraged. He wants them out. OUT! So his Sikh can come do some acupuncture to see if it will something medical. He blows out the candle they’ve lit. Which is, I’m sure, very symbolic of not allowing people to light candles in hospital rooms where there are probably canisters of oxygen.
After, Finn is out playing football. He argues with current QB Big Mouth about a certain play. Big mouth goes with Finn’s play and gets his shoulder dislocated for his troubles. Ouch. Coach Beiste becomes my new hero by tossing Finn the ball and calling him “Lurch.”
Finn: OMG. My sandwich is evil!
Kurt apologizes to everybody for being such a douche. Then he sings I Want To Hold Your Hand for his dad (!) while a bunch of videos of his childhood play. It’s the best song of the episode for sure. I question the song choice, but at least Chris Colfer goes for it.
Because this is Glee, one cannot make it through a song without crying, here it is, your Gleers shot of the episode:
Finn, meanwhile, is freaking out because his sandwich caused Sam to dislocate his shoulder. So he goes to the guidance counsellor. Who is a grown woman and yet, her outfit. Let me show you it:
Emma: Logic dictates that your sandwich is not granting you wishes. Logic also dictates that there probably aren’t germs on my skin, but I feel unclean inside anyway! Scrub scrub scrub!
So Finn leaves and sings Losing My Religion. About which I can only comment: I don’t think that song means what you think it means.
Mercedes tempts Kurt into joining her at church by telling him he can wear a fabulous hat. He does indeed wear a fabulous hat.
Mercedes murders Bridge Over Troubled Water with her church choir. That is a quiet song and it is meant to be sung quietly. It loses all its effectiveness when it becomes a powerhouse screamer, but Mercedes never met a song she couldn’t wail to. Also, she tells her entire congregation that Kurt doesn’t believe in God. Ugh. Here’s how Mercedes was an asshole: I don’t UNDERSTAND YOU now that I know you’re not religious! You MUST have something that’s SACRED! Like Whitney Houston. Crack is whack, y’all! HI CHURCH! I am sure there are HUNDREDS of awesome gospel songs she could have sung. But instead, this. Great.
Sue: Time to haul out an emotionally manipulative scene with my handicapable sister! Also known as the Jane Lynch Emmy Reel. P.S. I am an atheist because the lord disappointed me. That’s why most people are atheists. I’d totally believe in god, but I just can’t quite find my way to him! Won’t somebody pray for me?
Sue’s sister: I will!
Well, at least this scene gave us a genuine, Sue Sylvester smile.
Back at the hospital, Kurt apologizes to his dad for not telling him earlier, but what he truly believes in is “us.” See, THIS is what I was waiting for. The “But you must have SOMETHING that is sacred!” conversation was just… woof! I kept waiting for Kurt to bust out that he does have something “sacred” to him. As evidenced by his anvil-dropping conversation with Burt (“Eat healthy, dad! Don’t want you to have a HEART ATTACK FROM TOO MUCH LOVING! I mean, Slim Jims!”) the thing that Kurt holds sacred is his family. But being a teenager in a small city, he doesn’t quite know how to reconcile that with also wanting to go out and sing along to The Sound of Music. Oh, and Burt, you seriously need to change the night of your family dinners when you wake up from your coma. Because Friday night is sacred to all right-thinking people who want to go out and PARTAY.
Right. Lots of Gleers for Kurt this episode.
So Burt squeezes Kurt’s hand. The end.
NOT SO FAST.
We have one more shitty song ostensibly about religion to sing and poorly edit! Tina opens up Joan Osborne’s One of Us. And she should really get more solos because she has a really sweet voice.
Also, look at these two suave motherfuckers! The Asian Fusion is strong in these two. Good singing, Tina. Good looking hot in a wife beater, Mike. I’m an atheist, but I worship at Our Lady of the Abs. Services every Tuesday at 10 p.m. IN MY DREAMS.
We can’t forget the most important part about this episode. And any Christian religious ceremony: Communion. Here is Finn, eating his disgusting, week-old grilled cheese sandwich, which he has hauled around to football practice and kept in his bedroom.
Wicked symbolism, bra.
Get it? Now the plate is empty. Just like Finn’s soul! His stomach, however, is burbling with rancid grilled cheese.